The manufacturer of a type of glass that can be electronically tinted has opened a new manufacturing plant in Minnesota that can produce 4 million sq. ft. of glass a year in sizes up to 5 ft. by 10 ft.
SageGlass said the 324,000-sq. ft. plant in Faribault, Minn., is the largest of its kind in the world. It was built to LEED Silver standards.
The company said it had made a number of improvements in the glazing, not only in the maximum size of the panels but in its aesthetic appearance. The glass, which is available in a number of different tints, has a laminated construction that makes it stronger than previous versions, according to the company.
The glass can change from clear to a fully tinted state in 15 minutes or less. Visible light transmittance at the center of the glass can be manipulated from 62% in its fully clear mode to 2% fully tinted. By controlling the amount of sunlight and heat that enters a building, the glass can reduce the cooling load by 20%, SageGlass says.
It takes 0.28 watts of energy per sq. ft. to change the light transmittance of the glass, but only 0.1 watts per sq. ft. to maintain a tint. On average, the company says, 2,000 sq. ft. of glass can be controlled with the same amount of energy consumed by a 60 watt light bulb.
Sage has partnerships to make residential windows with H Window Company, Marvin Windows and Weather-Tek Design Center.
SageGlass was founded in 1989 and is now owned by Saint-Gobain.